Mar 2, 2015

Maruhide Uni Club - Mouthful of Santa Barbara Uni for a Bargained Price

Maruhide has been in the manufacturing and processing business for more than 3 decades. Right after the start of the retail restaurant, its fame has grown wider mostly due to bargained price uni.


You can learn all about Maruhide and lines of sea urchin products on their website. Meanwhile, here're some of the pictures from my lunch dining experiences. 


Click on the image for an enlarged view -




Asahi beer $3 -


Salad that comes with the chirashi -


Bread -


Sea cucumber Carpaccio $11.8 -


You can also choose either tuna, salmon, or scallop for the Carpaccio. 


Bottom: crispy green salad $7.8. Top: marinated sea urchin with squid roll $6.5 -


Didn't realize that the Carpaccio comes with a plateful of leafy greens, otherwise I would have never ordered the crispy salad. 

Marinated uni is not as common as the fresh counterpart here in CA. As a result, ordering a roll is a good way to see if the flavors are as attractive as fresh uni. If you ended up loving marinated uni, Maruhide sells bottles with different seasonings ranging from olive oil, chili, squid, yuzu & chili, and original that you can take home with.

Sea urchin cream pasta $13.8 -


The uni pasta from EMC in Los Angeles tastes way better.

Soup -


Nigiyaga bowl $19.8 -


Overall, the price is pretty good considering the amount of fresh seafood you get. Taste-wise, it's neighter outstanding nor different from other similar restaurants. However, if you're craving for some Santa Barbara uni, Maruhide would be a money saving place to go for.


Cindy's Rating: 6 (good quantity but taste-wise not so memorable quality)

Maruhide Uni Club 丸秀
2130 West Redondo Beach Blvd
Torrance, CA 90504
(310) 323-2864
http://www.maruhide.us/?lang=en

Business Hours:
Tuesday - Saturday 
Lunch 11:30 a.m. ~ 2 p.m.
Dinner 5:30 p.m. ~ 10 p.m.

Feb 22, 2015

Sweet Tooth Weekend - Danish Toasts with Melted Dark Chocolate and Gouda

Just...craving for something buttery, sugary, and perhaps sultry.

Danish toasts with melted dark chocolate and Gouda -



Ingredients (for 1 to 2 servings)?


  • 2 thick slices of Danish toast (can be substitute with milk toast)
  • 1/3 cup of dark chocolate chips
  • 1 Gouda cheese square
  • 1 tablespoon of unsalted butter




How?

Melt the butter in a non-stick pan with medium heat. Add in the toasts and wait till the color turns slightly browned. Only need to heat up one side of the bread, but toasting both sides should yield an even crunchier texture.

Once the toasts are ready, transfer onto a baking dish with un-seared side up. Lay the dark chocolate chips on one toast and Gouda cheese square on the other. Into the oven with medium high heat till the chocolate starts to melt. The chocolate chips might still look like individual chips when in fact already softened, poke the chocolate with a stick and see if softened already.

Remove from heat and combine the toasts, cut in half before serving.


Other milky cheese varieties also work well with this dessert version of grilled sandwich, Swiss and Mozzarella can be two other options. 

Feb 16, 2015

Find Some Comfort Here: Hearty Broccoli Soup with Chunks of Chorizo

This is my version of broccoli soup - creamy but mixed with chunks of chorizo for a more satisfactory bite. The use of spicy sausages along with smoked paprika and some black pepper gives this soup a kick, definitely warms you up on a chill day. 

Hearty broccoli soup with chunks of chorizo - 



Ingredients?


  • 2 medium broccoli
  • 2 chorizo or other kind of spicy sausages
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 onion
  • 1/4 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons of all purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons of unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 6 cups of unsalted or low sodium chicken stock
  • Some heavy whipping cream
  • Some smoked paprika


How?

In a big pot, drizzle 1 tablespoon of olive oil and turn to medium high heat. Remove the chorizo from the casing and break into smaller bite size pieces. Add the chorizo into the pot and sear till fully cooked through. 



Scoop out the chorizo for later use, leaving the oil and brown colored flavorful bits inside the pot.

Add 3 tablespoon of butter. Peel and dice the onion and into the pot along with salt and pepper. Sear for about 3 minutes. 


Peel and finely chop the garlic cloves, add to the pot and cook for another minute.

Peel and discard the tough fibrous outer later from the broccoli stems. Chop the broccoli into medium pieces and add into the mixture along with 1 more tablespoon of olive oil. Sprinkle in the flour and cook for one minute till the color turns yellowish. 

Pour in the chicken stock, bring to a boil then lower the heat to keep it simmering slightly. Cook for 15 minutes or so till the broccoli softens. Taste and see if more salt is needed.

Turn off the heat and wait till the soup cools down if blending with a standalone blender in batches. Transfer the blended creamy soup back into the pot and pour in some heavy whipping cream. I used about one cup if remembered correctly. However, adjust the amount based on how milky or dense you would like the soup to be. 

Sprinkle in a few dashes of smoked paprika and bring the creamy soup back to boil again. Once ready, lower the heat to keep it warm. Add the chorizo pieces back to the soup. Decorate with heavy cream before serving.


This broccoli soup can also be served with toasted bread, the kind that can soak up all the flavors when dipping in. 

Other creamy soup recipe:
Hearty tomato bisque with a dollop of basil yogurt
Thyme infused pumpkin soup